Here’s how drinking coffee could protect your heart | Science News

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Here’s how drinking coffee could protect your heart

In mice, caffeine boosts cells’ energy and that helps repair damage

By
2:00pm, June 21, 2018
four cups of coffee

CUPSA JOE Studies have shown that people who drink four cups of coffee a day have a lower risk of dying of a heart attack. A new study in mice may show one reason for that; caffeine in coffee gives cells energy to fight off damage.

Coffee revs up cell’s energy factories and helps hearts recover from heart attacks, a study of mice suggests.

In the study, researchers gave mice the equivalent of four cups of coffee a day for 10 days before inducing heart attacks in the rodents. Cells in mice that got caffeine repaired the heart attack damage better than cells in mice that didn’t get caffeine, researchers report June 21 in PLOS Biology. Caffeine helps move a protein called p27 into mitochondria, the organelles that produce energy for cells. Increasing p27 in mitochondria upped the organelle’s energy production, and that helped heart cells recover from damage, a team led by researchers from Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf in Germany found.

People and other animals also have p27, raising the possibility that caffeine could help heal people’s hearts, too. Normally, p27 is found in the nucleus of cells, where it

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